My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord (Isaiah 55:8). Left to ourselves, our thoughts will always take us in a totally different direction to where God wants to take us. Of our own initiative, the most we are capable of is a general and fleeting curiosity of God without any actioned faith in Him.
When God thinks, He not only knows His own mind, but instinctively the Lord knows the thoughts of man also (Psalm 94:11). The fact is, humanity struggles to understand their own thoughts, and without divine intervention through God’s Spirit and God’s Word, we know nothing of what God thinks. Thankfully, God is NOT like mankind. O LORD, you have searched me and known me! 2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. 3 You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. 4 Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether (Psalm 139:1-4).
God presently knows every single human, including you and I – TOTALLY. No one is exempt from being fully known by the Almighty. Our deepest feelings, our motives, our intensions, our fears, our dreams, our sadness, and our joys, they are all known and understood in microscopic detail. The point of this realisation is threefold:
- God’s absolute knowledge of everything you think, say, and do, is an inescapable reality. Despite His thorough knowledge of you, He loves you the most.
- Denying God of His rightful authority over your life does not exclude you from His knowledge of you or from your responsibility to live a life of worship of Him.
- Irrespective of your circumstances in life, God knows, God cares, and God wants His Son Jesus Christ to be received into your life as saving Lord.
Intellectual awareness of God does us no good without a personal relationship with Him. Sympathy towards God cannot save us from ourselves or from the consequences of our sin. Christian upbringing, church attendance, benevolent acts of kindness with good intentions cannot save us from the consequences of independent thinking towards God.
King David had the right attitude; How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! (Psalm 139:17). Authentic faith in God prioritises His thoughts as authoritative in our lives. Proverbs 3:5-7 explains how this works within us; Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. 7 Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD, and turn away from evil. God’s values are to become our values.
Moving our thoughts towards God begins with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. A clear belief that Jesus died as your substitute on the Cross carrying your sin. A deep conviction that spiritually speaking, you died to your sin just as Christ died under the wrath of God for your sin, this is the beginning. As there is only one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus (1 Timothy 2:5), it starts with a personal faith relationship with Christ.
Once a relationship with God is established through faith in Jesus Christ, the Bible is then able to speak authoritatively into our inner thoughts to begin reconstruction. This takes time, patience, and a long-term commitment to personal change for greater Christlikeness.
To be continued…